Sunday, October 17, 2004

The Burb.

Everyone in the family is happy about the Suburban, especially me. It's so much more me than a mini van ever could be, I think, other than the fact that it sucks gas.....Mark filled it today and it cost $78. Woof. But Mark said it also got about 20 miles to the gallon driving to LA. That's not as bad as I thought it would be. But still Mark will not be using it on his daily 15-20 minute drive to work, unless I end up with a job that's farther away. The MG and the Cirrus are better commuter cars.
Zach approves of the Burb, although it's no Honda Oddessy. His friend had one and he was really looking for us to get one of those top o' the line oddessy's. But the Burb has three! power points so the kids can hook up our little tv and a video game when we are traveling. Tess and Thor also have put their stamp of approval on the Burb... All three are thrilled with the idea that they no longer have to squish together in one back seat. And they really like to play with the rear fan/AC controls. They can even choose between ceiling and floor vents as well as fan speed and tempurature levels.
The guy who owned it put some weird polypropalene or something seat covers on it that are waterproof, which mark likes but which I think are sweat-inducing. So I told him that he could keep the seat cover on his seat (the front passenger seat) but I am going to try my seat ( the driver's seat) without the seat cover because my lower back and thighs are sweaty after driving it. They are covering gray leather seats anyway, which is a shame in my book.
There are three army LTC's on DM, including Mark, and the guy we are buying the Burb from is one of them. (Three that we know of anyway). After driving to fort Huachuca I am very happy that Mark is stationed here in Tucson, rather than there because it is a typical army post and Sierra Vista does not seem like that big a community. Of course, Tucson doesn't seem like it's over 800,000 people either, except that it takes forever to get from one side to the other. It took us something like 35 minutes to get from DM, which is SE Tucson, to the mall in the NW corner of Tucson. There are very few tall buildings here, they just spread out instead. Driving to our new house is cool, because we drive through an area that is not yet built up. So we drive through desert rather than endless strip mall/gas station/fast food world. Hopefully they won't get around to filling in that area until long after we are gone from Tucson...

It is really really late and I am going to try to get some sleep now. Bad thing about being back in the states... I can't call family when I can't sleep at night because it is actually night for them too!

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

moving blues

It has been rainy and gray for a week or so, actually I think since the day they loaded our stuff into the crates. This is making me really look forward to Tucson and that weather -- sunshine and more sunshine, and then, hey, maybe some more sunshine! It will be a great opportunity to set all the furniture out in the sun and get that lovely European musty smell baked out of them.
Oops!Must go -- will finish later!

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Locker blues...

Thor's locker is still jammed, with his backpack inside it. And inside his backpack are his pencil cases. So he has no pencils, pens, scissors, glue, erasers, etc. It jammed on Friday. He came home yesterday, Monday, without his backpack because they hadn't gotten it open yet. I hope they get it open today. His toothbrush and pajamas are locked in there too, because he went to a sleepover Friday night. This somehow seems so Thor, somehow...

She's EIGHT!

But she says she still feels seven. And then says quit bugging her. So, even though Tess is now eight, she's still Tess. And she's excited about her new go-cart. I will take pictures of her riding it today and post them here, so you can see what I mean. Of course, she is also thrilled with her new Action Man, who is on roller blades and carrying a big wicked sword. He is wearing a helmet, but, really, how safety conscious can you be if you roller blade with an enormous sharp dangerous object?

Monday, September 06, 2004

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Web site with tons of addresses for news, etc.

This guy has posted a page in his blog with addresses for campaigns, news shows and organizations, radio, cable channels, etc. Great place to find addresses and emails when you want to blow off a little steam.

Hold baggage.

A bunch of stuff left today. It said there was a much nicer family down the block and was going to live with them from now on. Or a couple of Dutch guys came and put it in boxes and then in a smallish crate and drove off with it. Same guys who unloaded our stuff three years ago, actually. One of them went to school with the lady next door. The Netherlands really is a small country.

Dishes. Pillows and bedding. TV and computer. X-Box and 31 game discs. Legos. Toys. Golf clubs and roller blades. Tools, tape, flashlight. Folding camp chairs. Stuff.

I hate moving. I especially hate the last month of a move. I walk around feeling slightly nauseated and for some reason slightly hunched over. This last part could be imagination on my part, but still. I will also now be clutching a small bright red book so that I can write down those random thoughts of stuff I still gotta do. Probably not a pretty sight.

Monday, August 30, 2004


I had a great idea for a posting, but Zeke came down and needed to search out cheats for final fantasy and now I don't know what it was. Rats.

Listening to Britney through headphones.

Creeped me out. I am at the computer, listening to music through the headphones so Mark can hear the TV, and Overprotected by Britney Spears came on. (Don't ask why that song is downloaded onto my computer. That's not the point.) There is a lot of whispering and bouncing from speaker to speaker, and it was kinda sorta creepy. Like mindcontrol stuff, know what I mean?
The next song is Girl All the Bad Guys Want by Bowling for Soup, and I really like it. Zach hates it. But it has lyrics like :'her CD changer's full of singers who are mad at their dad". What's to hate?
Also current favorite are the Black-Eyed Peas. Yeahyeahyeahyeahyeahyeahyeahyeah

Someone on a blog reminded me of John Prine's "Your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore"... always a good song to hear when you tire of excessive patriotism displayed by people with more truck than brains...

Thursday, August 26, 2004


Main Entry: lib·er·al·ism
Pronunciation: 'li-b(&-)r&-"li-z&m
Function: noun
a political philosophy based on belief in progress, the essential goodness of the human race, and the autonomy of the individual and standing for the protection of political and civil liberties

Main Entry: con·ser·va·tism
Pronunciation: k&n-'s&r-v&-"ti-z&m
Function: noun
a : disposition in politics to preserve what is established b : a political philosophy based on tradition and social stability, stressing established institutions, and preferring gradual development to abrupt change


I noticed that I really like the ... and --. What does this say about me?


I hate moving. For the next 40 days, I will not sleep well, I will feel nauseated much of the time, and I will be upside down in Rubbermaid bins. I hate moving. We had 14,000 pounds of stuff (might I just mention holy crap -- 7 TONS of stuff) when we moved to the Netherlands. And the army will only pay for moving 17,000 or 17,500 pounds... Fortunately we have 2000 pounds in storage in the states and that's what we will have to pay for if we are overweight, rather than the stuff being shipped back from Europe. I have gone through some of the kids' clothing, and am in the middle of the toys. Books and DVD's are gonna be a problem, as well as all that pottery and oak antiques. I have, at latest count, 4 trunks, 2 antique beds, 2 benches made from antique beds, 2 hutches, the flemish cabinet, a sideboard, a table, and a marble-topped cabinet. Think that weighs 3000 pounds?

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Maybe this is why I love London...

Prozac Discovered In Britain's Drinking Water Supply
August 08, 2004
British authorities have found trace amounts of the anti-depressant Prozac in the country's drinking water supply, according to a report in the Observer Sunday newspaper.
The observer reports that environmentalists are "deeply alarmed", that the anti-depressant is being used in such large quantities that it is finding its way into the water supply.

The actual amount of Prozac in Britain's water supply remains unknown at this time. However, the Observer reports that The government's Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) indicated the small amounts found are so 'watered down' that they are unlikely to pose a health risk.
However, an Environment Agency's report concluded Prozac could be potentially toxic in the water table, the Observer reported.
Some experts feel Prozac can have a negative impact on human reproduction.


why walmart is evil...

Today's CAP Progress Report (Aug. 9, 2004) discusses the effect of Wal-Mart on the California ecomony:
ECONOMY – WAL-MART IS NO BARGAIN: CBS News reports Americans are paying a stiff price for bargains at the mega corporation Wal-Mart. According to a recent University of California, Berkeley study, Wal-Mart actually takes a lot more from communities than it gives back in low prices. "Because of the low wages and because people do not have health insurance through their employer, people rely on public support to make ends meet," says the school's Ken Jacobs. In California, taxpayers pay an estimated $82-million a year to take care of health care, food stamps, and other social services for Wal-Mart employees.

This is from the blog Left is Right

Saturday, July 24, 2004

song lyrics...

It's from God Shuffled His Feet by the Crash Test Dummies. It's one of the questions that the people asked, what with God there...

The Crash Test Dummies have some very interesting song lyrics...

Saturday, July 17, 2004

song lyrics I like...

And if your eye got poked out in this life, would it be waiting up in heaven with your wife...

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

the finer points of brewing coffee...

are still eluding Zeke. This morning he brewed a lovely pot of hot water. No filter, no ground coffee. But the water was heated to perfection...

How did this happen? Used to be when Mark was gone the coffee pot would sit forlornly in the corner, never noticed or used. Now I don't brew coffee every day, but I do drink it quite a bit, and my friends gave me a bracelet with a coffee cup charm...Starbucks seems to be my middle name here. Interesting. I am even a coffee snob of sorts -- I like Kenyan coffee the best, and I generally don't drink American grocery store brands (like Folgers...). Even worse, I don't like the grocery store bulk coffee beans anymore -- no, I want Starbucks or Bratdorf and Bronson, you know, the stuff that's $10 a pound...And now Zeke likes drinking coffee, or rather flavored creamer with coffee. On the good side, it means he can (theoretically) brew a pot of coffee, but on the other hand, it means that each bag of coffee beans has to be split three ways. Better start telling him it will stunt his growth. Or at least stunt the growth of his chin hairs...

Monday, July 12, 2004


I want my London jewelry. I realize you are one of my favorite nieces, and you have excellent taste in jewelry,but it's mine... I knew I should have checked your mom's suitcase...

Zeke's internet camera

For some reason I find this little camera lens creepy. It has a little door that you can slide across the lens, and I feel the need to close it when I am at the computer. It just seems like someone is watching me, even though A) it's not on and B) who would want to watch me reading and typing?

They rocked. And now they are done.

Back to the real world... or at least my version of it. I slept away most of Friday after dropping Marilyn off at the airport at 6 am and getting Zeke off to work at 8:30. We had an interesting conversation about how if work starts at 8:30, you actually are supposed to be there at 8:30. Doesn't seem to be a big deal for this job, but someday he will have a pain in the ass boss who thinks he sould be there on time...
Saturday...hmmm, big blank in my mind. I think I slept late, then hung out with the kids until Zeke ticked me off, so I went to buy groceries. Geez, my life is so thrilling...
Sunday, still nothing exciting...We saw Mean Girls and all thought it was a fun movie.

Only a couple more days til Mark is back from Afghanistan. Still no word on where we are going. Once we find out we will be hustling to get everything done...I have started a pile of stuff to drop off at the thrift shop and have begun listing what I need to get rid of...I just love moving...

Also on Saturday Pattie brought me the sideboard I bought at the antique warehouse in Belgium. Now we have a square table standing in the middle of the living room because there is no other place for it. There is a nice table at the warehouse that I think Mark will like, so then we will have to figure out where to put our current table and the bed and bench that are still at Willie's...I could move some of this furniture upstairs but it seems like a lot of work when the movers will be moving it back down again in the next month or so. I keep looking at various pieces of furniture trying to decide if we should keep them or not...

Sunday, June 20, 2004

Zeke thinks I am the coolest mom ever.

He is really impressed that I have a blog, but I am not as funny as the defective yeti guy. He still loves me, but I can't beat the squirrelly. The gauntlet has been thrown down.

Saturday, June 19, 2004

Busy busy busy

Today was supposed to be the first day of summmer vacation. We had a pool party for Tess's Brownie Girl Scout troop, but the rest of the day was supposed to be down time. But turns out Thor had a birthday party this afternoon, and Zeke had a going away party to go to, so I spent much of the day driving from one place to another and then back again. I was supposed to go to a party tonight but I completely forgot about it...Whoops! Hopefully they didn't miss me...
Must go because Zeke needs the computer...

Friday, June 18, 2004

Woo Hoo! The next 3 weeks are gonna ROCK!!!

Mark will be home!!!! No more single momhood!!! Marilyn is coming, and we are going to London for four days, and then back for one day, then off to Poland and the Czech Republic for four more days.

(Marilyn, I reserved the big van -- we are gonna pick it up the evening of the 30th, and leave at 4 am on the first, go to the Czech Republic and stay over night there, then spend the 2nd and 3rd in Poland, hopefully in the castle--I am still working on that part. Then we will be back to the Netherlands on the fourth of July...).

Then, Marilyn and I will do day trips -- the antique warehouse, the grocery store in Belgium for 47.5 pounds of Belgian chocolate, the Koln cathedral since I haven't seen it yet, Aachen, Maastricht, who knows...And of course, just hanging out, because otherwise Marilyn may not survive this vacation.

I am so jazzed about London!!! I love London, it is one of my favorite cities ever. Ever. I don't know why, but every time I have been there I have had a great time. Part of it may be that I have always gone to London from Germany or the Netherlands, and it is always a relief to not have to deal with the whole language be able to read all the signs, talk to people without mangling their language (actually, some Brits may argue that as an American I do in fact mangle their language...). Shopping. Fabulous shopping, and the British museum. West End shows. Also may be that after all this time in Europe, where stuff is closed on Sundays and evenings, to go to an enormous city where there is always something happening. Whatever the reason, I get to spend four days in one of my favorite cities with one of my favorite sisters...Excellent. Super. Fabo.

Again. Woo Bloody Hoo!!!

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Talking to Europeans about politics.

This past week I went to my international book club meeting, where we were discussing Hillary Clinton's book. It was very interesting, as there were a couple of Germans, an Italian, a Canadian and a couple of Americans there. (There are twenty some members of this book group, but hardly any of them wanted to read this book, and I was the only American who read it.) The Germans pointed out that in Germany, they believe Gorbechov was the one who caused the collapse of the Soviet Union, and that Reagan was incidental to the whole thing, which is quite different from the conservative American view. Talking to Europeans about America, Americans and American politics is very interesting. It tends to remind me how egocentric Americans can be...I sometimes find Americans who think that the USA is the center of the universe.
Also, Germans learn that North and South America are one continent -- America. Which can be fun, because you can torture some Canadians with the idea that they are Americans, the same way Germans are Europeans. Really drives that certain segment of the Canadian population here crazy...
Now, as it is getting really really late, I am going to bed.

New blog.

Wow. I got it to work, and here I am with absolutely nothing to say. This is fairly intidating. But let's start with what I did today...
I went to a giant antiques warehouse in Belgium. I saw another gorgeous arts and crafts hutch, in better shape than the one I bought there a few months ago, and I didn't buy it. I did buy an arts and crafts style sideboard, and a thread cabinet and a really crap cheap little cabinet that Zeke has already hauled off to his room, but because I already own three hutches, and have possession of one I bought for my sister, I was very virtuous and didn't buy the one I fell in love with today. Damn it. Now that it's almost one am, I realize I made a huge mistake and should have bought it. The fact that there are three hutches, a table and chairs, a side table, a bookcase and a large Flemish cabinet in my dining room already is beside the point. I really don't know where I am going to put the sideboard I bought today...very soon we will not be able to walk through our house. Good thing we are moving soon. We think.